Wednesday, August 30, 2006


Early one morning,
Just as the sun was rising,
I heard a maid sing in the valley below:
‘Oh, don’t deceive me;
Oh, never leave me!
How could you use a poor maiden so?’

I was in town, shopping with Maddie when she suddenly said,

‘See that blonde over there?’

I looked and saw an attractive woman with bleached hair.

‘Yes! What about her?’

‘She looks like the woman Jamie’s been seeing.’

When I had got over the shock I begged Maddie to tell me all she knew. She was probably regretting having said anything but gradually she gave me snippets of information so I could piece them together and get some sort of understanding.
He had met her sometime in the summer. She was a sexy older woman, married with a young child. She fell hook, line and sinker for Jamie. She knew about me and was aware of when he came up to see me. She was a very determined woman and made up her mind she was going to have Jamie and left her husband and child to pursue him.

For his part Jamie was twenty two, very vulnerable as far as sex was concerned and aware that it would be at least a couple of years before we could be married. He was in debt and I earned peanuts. I don’t think he stood a cat in hells chance to resist such a temptation. The odd friend who had met me remonstrated with him but whether Maddie and Paul did I have no idea. They obviously knew – hence the odd hints they dropped which had unnerved me. At one time they had jokingly suggested I ask Jamie why he would never play the trumpet again. He was living a double life, drinking too much through stress and had got into a fight which resulted in a broken tooth.

It puzzled me that they took it so lightly. As far as Maddie was concerned I was just her kid sister – not to be taken seriously and I hadn’t told anyone of Jamies’s proposal and my acceptance.

It took me a while to absorb all this information and slowly I began to get angry. I was angry with this woman for deliberately setting out to seduce Jamie when she knew he had a girlfriend; I was angry with Jamie for being weak and allowing me to think it was all my fault and I was angry with myself for being such a stupid , deluded, virginal idiot.

The anger was cleansing and eradicated the self-pity and despair. I thought of the strength of Mum and Gran. No man was going to ruin my life. I had been happy before and I would be happy again – eventually. I decide to remove all thoughts of Jamie from my conscious mind and attempt never to take anyone or anything for granted again. Meanwhile I was going to get on with my life – finish my training and plan the future. My immediate problem was what to do with my fortnight’s holiday.

Our set had by now halved with nurses leaving, unable to withstand the stresses and strains of hospital life. Ginny had met a boy and was getting very serious so she wasn’t available for a holiday trip but lately I had been working with Kate another member of our set. She was a really good person without being pi and I found her comforting to be with. She told me about Plas: a Christian Fellowship House in Wales nestled in the mountains. There were outdoor activities and she warned me – prayers morning and evening. She showed me a snap of it and when she invited me to join her in February I jumped at the chance. Snowdon here I come!

Below: - Plas and Kate


AndrewM said...

The man's a cad!

PI said...

andrewm: but you like him really don't you?

Z said...

Even though we knew there was only bad news to come, it was still painful to read.

I wonder, was it harder to go through alone, as no one else knew you had been engaged, or would it have been even more agonising if everyone had known and you'd had to face sympathy.

PI said...

Hi Z: I tried to keep it positive - much easier to do at this distance. The years teach one
not to take oneself too seriously.
Looking back I think it was probably easier not to have people know. I hadn't thought of it before. I think I probably told Maddie eventually. She wasn't overly sympathetic. Typical sister!

Z said...

Actually, you are much braver than I am - I generally only write about happy memories and bury the rest.

R. Sherman said...

You know, dear, you really shouldn't have written this for us to read for free. This is best-seller stuff.

You could be rich, now.



Can't say owt bad about him. The saying 'pot n kettle' springs to mind (til I met Caz of course. We all know where the male brain is located don't we?

PI said...

Z: you know what they say - better out than in. Also with age one gets a'whatthehellwhatthehell!'

Randall: it's a nice thought mais je suis contente. Have to keep my French up for the French in laws

fjl said...

Kate looks like Florence Pash.

I was waiting for this one.

So: he didn't stand a chance? mmmm. You mean he made a mistake, which he repented of.

I know, tough as old boots, me. If only I looked it.

It makes sense, the way he was at the station screamed 'other woman'. That's when they dry up.

Rotters ;-)

Sorry about yesterday Patti I'm dealing with one two many nuisances at the moment xx

PI said...

4d: I'm not going to disagree with you honey!

PI said...

felicity: not to worry.
As for the story - once I knew the truth - or as near as I was going to get - everything made sense. It is only with the fulness of time that I have been as forgiving and understanding as possible - with regard to Jamie's 'pecadillos '-without wanting to puke.

Life of a Banana said...

There's something about a man who is attached. All of a sudden he becomes VERY desirable. I know this. Dolly, all of a sudden, has become a piece of cow turd with all those annoying flies buzzing around him.

Life of a Banana said...

There's something about a man who is attached. All of a sudden he becomes VERY desirable. I know this. Dolly, all of a sudden, has become a piece of cow turd with all those annoying flies buzzing around him.

PI said...

LoaB: swat 'em banana! Swat 'em!

Sam, Problem-Child-Bride said...

This other woman left her husband and CHILD for Jamie? With hindsight he, at 22, is still young enough to forgive an indiscretion but abandoning a child for a man she hadn't met that long ago - that's very hard to understand.

You were very strong in the face of it though, Pat. It must have hurt you. Jamie sounds very mixed up at that time.